Child Custody in Orange County

How is child custody determined?

You and the co-parent may be able to determine what works best for the child out of court by reaching a mutual agreement, perhaps with the assistance of a mediator. Otherwise, the issue will be brought into a courtroom. California courts aim to find the solution that is best for the child. Usually, the ideal situation is considered to be preserving the child's relationships with both parents, but the court may award sole custody to one parent (the "better parent") if the other is deemed unfit. Courts may even award custody to a non-parent guardian if this is what appears to be in the child's best interests. To determine what is ideal, courts examine factors such as:

  • The wishes of a child (especially if the child is at least older than 12)
  • Time the child spends with each parent
  • The quality of each child-parent relationship
  • Substance abuse by either parent
  • Any history of domestic violence
  • Alcoholism
  • Criminal convictions
  • Child's health and age

If there is a history of domestic violence, courts will not want to award custody to that parent, unless there are protection measures in place (such as might enable supervised visitation, for example) or perhaps if the parent has successfully completed batterer's treatment and a parenting class. The whole goal of the court's decision is to establish the arrangement that preserves the best interests of the child. We understand that this normally includes preserving your parental rights so you can maintain a healthy relationship that is vital to both you and the child. With your family's future at stake, you cannot afford to be without wise legal counsel and strong representation.

How a Mission Viejo Child Custody Lawyer Protect Your Child

At The Hunter Law Group, we have been passionately working for more than a decade to protect the best interests of families in the Orange County area. We understand that your child comes first, and we want to help craft the parenting plan/custody arrangement that provides your child with the brightest future. We provide knowledgeable and experienced legal counsel that can bring about as optimal a result as possible. We want to help safeguard you and your child's futures.

Call today to learn more about how we can help you!